Friday, July 23, 2010

Different summer

I’ve spent most of my summer sitting in the office, trying to finish all the pending jobs before the final push needed to complete the thesis. For the last weeks the entire building has been practically empty, except for a few exchange students, cleaning women and the secretary on duty. So in principle it’s a perfect time for undisturbed science. But in practice, summer seems to make concentrating even more difficult than usual. Normally the daily routines just flow on uninterrupted, but during the short summer there’s suddenly so much going on that your mind keeps on straying elsewhere. And in addition, the exceptionally hot weather certainly affects everyone. Is it the climate that makes northern people somehow appear more diligent than e.g. the Mediterranean?

Good thing about the office work is that you don’t need to be in the forest. This summer I’ve had just two field days, supervising two students to start their seedling stand campaign two weeks ago. Seedling inventories are the worst of all forest measurements. The stands are often miserable thickets or barricaded with felled trees. It’s either too hot or too wet, and the horseflies and mosquitoes never leave you alone. For me two hot and moist days were enough, and since then it’s been much worse. Keep up the good work boys…

On the other hand, the temperature here in my room is still +27°C, which is not too bad when compared to last week. The computer also has a nasty warming effect. But the good thing is that the bosses are also away, so nothing can stop me from grabbing a bunch of articles and heading for the beach to read!

Dust scatters on stacks of paper.